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  • Synbiotics


    Synbiotics refer to food ingredients or dietary supplements combining probiotics and prebiotics in a form of synergism, hence synbiotics. The synbiotic concept was first introduced as "mixtures of probiotics and prebiotics that beneficially affect the host by improving the survival and implantation of live microbial dietary supplements in the gastrointestinal tract, by selectively stimulating the growth and/or by activating the metabolism of one or a limited number of health-promoting bacteria, thus improving host welfare". As of 2018, the research on this concept is preliminary, with no high-quality evidence from clinical research that such benefits exist. Synbiotics may be complementary synbiotics, where each component is independently chosen for its potential effect on host health, or synergistic synbiotics, where the prebiotic component is chosen to support the activity of the chosen probiotic. Research is evaluating if synbiotics can be optimized, (known as 'optibiotics') which are purported to enhance the growth and health benefits of existing probiotics.

  • Orchid mycorrhiza


    Orchid mycorrhizae are symbiotic relationships between the roots of plants of the family Orchidaceae and a variety of fungi. All orchids are myco-heterotrophic at some point in their life cycle. Orchid mycorrhizae are critically important during orchid germination, as an orchid seed has virtually no energy reserve and obtains its carbon from the fungal symbiont. The symbiosis starts with a structure called a protocorm. During the symbiosis, the fungus develops structures, called pelotons, within the root cortex of the orchid. Many adult orchids retain their fungal symbionts, although the benefits to the adult photosynthetic orchid and the fungus remain largely unexplored.

  • Arbuscular mycorrhiza


    An arbuscular mycorrhiza (plural mycorrhizae or mycorrhizas, a.k.a. endomycorrhiza) is a type of mycorrhiza in which the fungus (AM fungi, or AMF) penetrates the cortical cells of the roots of a vascular plant. (Not to be confused with ectomycorrhiza or ericoid mycorrhiza.) Arbuscular mycorrhizas are characterized by the formation of unique structures, arbuscules and vesicles by fungi of the phylum Glomeromycota. AM fungi help plants to capture nutrients such as phosphorus, sulfur, nitrogen and micronutrients from the soil. It is believed that the development of the arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis played a crucial role in the initial colonisation of land by plants and in the evolution of the vascular plants. It has been said that it is quicker to list the plants that do not form endomycorrhizae than those that do. This symbiosis is a highly evolved mutualistic relationship found between fungi and plants, the most prevalent plant symbiosis known, and AMF is found in 80% of vascular plant families in existence today. The tremendous advances in research on mycorrhizal physiology and ecology over the past 40 years have led to a greater understanding of the multiple roles of AMF in the ecosystem. This knowledge is applicable to human endeavors of ecosystem management, ecosystem restoration, and agriculture. Flax root cortical cells containing paired arbuscules

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